Eisai's H3 Biomedicine taps cancer genomics software for drug discovery effort

H3 Biomedicine has grabbed software for exploring cancer genomes as the Cambridge, MA, unit of Japan-based pharma Eisai hunts for targeted cancer drugs. Ann Arbor, MI-based Compendia Bioscience will provide H3 with the software under a three-year licensing deal, enabling the drug discovery outfit to mine vast amounts of data on cancer genomes for new targets.

Developers are chasing down a wealth of new potential cancer drug targets that have surfaced through genome studies. Compendia's flagship software Oncomine compiles more than 62,000 cancer genomic profiles with tools to analyze, mine and visualize the data, Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News reported. With help from the software company, H3 also plans to drill into data from The Cancer Genome Atlas project for potential drug targets and biomarkers to light the way to new therapies, Compendia said.

Eisai has been equipping H3 with scientists and tools to discover breakthrough cancer drugs since launching the discovery unit early last year with an up to $200 million, 10-year funding commitment. And bioinformatics tools appear to be playing heavily into H3's game plan as it sets out to advance new small molecules against cancer toward the clinic, with the goal, like many other discovery outfits, to find drugs for genetically defined patient populations.

"As we aim to develop H3 into a potent cancer drug discovery enterprise, it is clear that we need to partner with companies such as Compendia that think about cancer in the same way we do, that believe the development of cancer therapeutics begins with a clear understanding of the molecular characteristics and diversity of cancer patients," Dr. Markus Warmuth, H3's CEO, said in a statement.

- here's the release
- see GEN's article

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